Light up the holidays with this Sephora + Pantone Universe Luminous Brush Set: photos & review

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The product: SEPHORA + PANTONE UNIVERSE Alchemy of Color Luminous Brush Set

I’ve been planning a “daily beauty” column recently, and I thought I’d start it off with this Sephora + Pantone brush set — that is, right up until it got a stealthy half-price markdown. 

While it’s good, it just didn’t feel like it was $80 worth of awesome, you know? But, at $41 CAD, these white-bristled synthetics are worth a second glance.

Beauty & the Bag

Housed in a large silver makeup bag, the Luminous Brush Set is made up of eight brushes, all super-soft synthetics. (Well, I mean, not the brow/lash comb, but then, those never are.)

I’m not usually a fan of bags that come as part of a set, but Sephora really knocked it out of the park with their Fall/Winter makeup brush sets’ bags, both in their Sephora Collection line and in the Sephora + Pantone Universe one. This one’s much larger than most–9 1/2″ tall, 7 1/4″ wide, and 2 1/2″ deep–and while the brushes make this set worthwhile on their own, the bag really takes it that extra step.

The individual brushes

The Luminous set includes eight brushes, but I’m going to count it as six — no one actually needs as many brow/lash combs as they’ll end up with after buying a makeup brush set or two, and the powder brush in this set is okay, but pretty sub-par compared to everything else. (Cheap powder brushes are just so floppy, you know?)

I liked the liner & concealer brushes, in particular — the concealer brush is just the right mix of soft & firm, making it easy to blend cream products seamlessly around the eyes and nose. The liner brush is really good, too: tiny and flat, it pairs well with gel liner for a sharp, easy-to-control line.

Another honourable mention is the unexpectedly soft smudge brush. These tend to be stiff, which really irritates my eyes, but this one was a great shape for getting blending around the lashline (or applying along it, for smaller eyes) – without feeling like a porous wooden stick.

The finishing touches

All of these brushes are labelled on the handle (both in English and French, though I’m not sure if that’s the same in the US), making them perfect for the beauty beginner. It’s just a little thing, and I’m not terribly strict with my use-what-where rules, but it’s a nice touch!

The verdict?

I’d really hesitate to recommend this at its original price, but at $34 US / $41 CAD (seriously!) this set’s an absolutely brilliant deal. While not top-grade brushes, they’re all very good, and the types & shapes have all been picked out quite well. Plus, the bag is a great find — a little flashy, but the size & easy-to-clean surfaces mean I’ll definitely be keeping it around.

With a markdown this good, I’m not sure if it’ll still be around by Christmas, so pick up a set (or two) now — it would make the perfect gift for someone just getting into makeup, and at that price, I’d recommend it as a soft, synthetic brush set for yourself, too.

SEPHORA + PANTONE UNIVERSE Luminous Brush Set (Alchemy of Color collection) – bag

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4 Responses to “Light up the holidays with this Sephora + Pantone Universe Luminous Brush Set: photos & review”

  1. BooBooNinja, on November 8th, 2012 at 12:22 pm said:

    Ha ha — re: "porous wooden stick".
    I'm going to look at the last brush kit you reviewed and try to figure out the bag. It wasn't clear from the photos how the pockets were supposed to house MU/brushes. Was there a specific section for the brushes, or are you intended to put them in separate zip sections? Off to procrastinate…

  2. Pockets can be used for whatever, y'know? I put things into different parts of that bag depending on what I have with me that day — all the brushes in the non-zippered sections + makeup in the zippered ones, for instance, or one or two brushes in the non-zippered sections + makeup everywhere else.

    Hope you like it, though! At the marked-down prices, I'm actually tempted to pick up a backup of each for future gift-giving ;)

  3. "80 dollars worth of awesome"– haha, you are funny, girl! Hmmm, not sure about the brushes. I like the idea of a flexible smudge brush, but the rest of them don't appeal. The bag, on the other hand, looks awesome! Maybe they will start selling it separately? Or maybe I give the brushes as gifts and keep the bag? ;)

  4. Ooh, that might work! Sephora has some really cute bags coming for the holidays, too, though — will try to get photos/reviews up asap ;)

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